About us

ArtSIG aims to enrich practice by promoting arts therapies and the use of the arts in education and in enhancing the understanding of psychiatrists’ roles within medicine and within society.

From this page you can sign up to ArtSIG, get involved in promoting the arts in psychiatry and keep up to date with latest news and events.

Our aims:

  • Art in training - Interpreting artworks helps us to understand ourselves and our patients, providing insight and emotion that can expand and change our views and actions. This can improve workforce wellbeing, both in promotion of art for meaning and direction but also to help prevent distress and burnout. We hope to promote this amongst trainees and potential trainees as part of 'Choose Psychiatry' also and create enthusiasm for use of art in enriching professional practice.
  • Art in treatment - Treatment of mental disorders using the arts, including the formal arts therapies - art, music, dance/movement and drama therapies. We hope to promote understanding of these where possible including with collaboration from the specific disciplines.
  • Art in public - We hope to work with other organisations to combat stigma and discrimination through supporting authentic portrayal of mental health experiences in the arts. The power of art lies with its creator and their lived experience. Many service users will make art without any need of support from psychiatrists, but for those who do want support and co-production, we would like to provide the environment and conditions for people to feel and be creative.

Our current objectives:

  • To grow the SIG membership and identify the many arts activities taking place
  • We are seeking articles of any relevance
  • Inform ArtSIG members of any relevant upcoming arts events


Hannah AliChair
Arabo ShahenianFinancial Officer
Rosemary SedgwickSecretary
Rachel ProctorTrainees Link
Alan BabanCommunications Lead
Daniel ReganService User Rep
Shirin Pezeshgi 
Thana Balamurali 
Sunita Deshmukh 


ArtSIG is open to all members of The Royal College of Psychiatrists. Members and Associates may join by completing our  online application form or emailing the College Membership office.

Others may be invited to join at the discretion of the ArtSIG Chair.

Contact: sigs@rcpsych.ac.uk


Newsletter - December 2019 (PDF)

Future events

  • Save the date - ArtSIG Poetry conference - 22 May 2023

Past events

  • Thursday 28 July 2022, 1-2pm online – ArtSIG Workshop: Quick Assemblage with Ollie Bragg
  • Thursday 28 April 2022, 1-2pm online – ArtSIG Workshop: Tools for Compassionate Creative Sharing with Lottie McCarthy
  • Thursday 24 February 2022, 1-2pm online – ArtSIG Workshop: Zen Doodling with Karen Barnes
  • Thursday 24 February 2022, 1-2pm online – ArtSIG Workshop: Creative Writing for Wellbeing with Julie Devon
  • Thursday 20 January 2022, 1-2pm online – ArtSIG Workshop: Play with drawing
  • Thursday 17 June 2022, 1-2pm online – ArtSIG Workshop: Utilizing mobile photography and sketching as a form of grounding
  • Thursday 27 May 2022, 1-2pm online – Health on film – ArtSIG Presents an evening of short films bridging the gap between healthcare & art
  • Monday 9 March 2022 at Royal College of Psychiatrists in London
    • Please see programme for further details.
    • Photography, mental health and creative expression
    • Arts SIG and Art of Psychiatry Society speaker event and workshop.

Older events

11 December 2019

Please see attached programme for further information.

Art Exhibition at International Congress from 1-4 July 2019 at ExCeL London

Arts and Psychiatry SIG Annual Conference on 08 April 2019 at the Royal College of Psychiatrists.

Please see event agenda for what was covered on the day.

Louis Quail: Big Brother Artist Talk and Q&A on Thursday 4 October 2018, 6pm – 8pm at the Royal College of Psychiatrists

The Art of Psychiatry Society has been exploring the relationship between the arts and psychiatry, through artists talks, since 2011. This year the Art of Psychiatry Society and the RCPsych Art SIG joined forces to welcome their first guest artist to give a talk at the Royal College.

Louis Quail is a documentary photographer and he discussed his recently published work Big Brother. More information about Louis and his work is available at louisquail.com.

Read more to receive further information regarding a career in psychiatry